Ovarian cancer can be difficult to detect in its early stages, due to many of its symptoms being associated with other, much less serious illnesses such as irritable bowel syndrome. If left undiagnosed and untreated, however, ovarian cancer can become more serious over time. Here is what you need to know about the possible symptoms of ovarian cancer.
What are the main symptoms of ovarian cancer?
Ovarian cancer has four main symptoms:
- Persistent stomach pain
- Persistent bloating
- Difficulty eating/feeling full more quickly
- Needing to wee more frequently
These can also be symptoms of other, less serious, conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, ovarian cysts and polycystic ovary syndrome. If you’re experiencing these symptoms it doesn’t necessarily mean you have ovarian cancer.
Ovarian cancer symptoms might also include:
- Back pain
- Changes in bowel habits (going more often or a lot less)
- Unexplained weight loss
- Post-menopausal vaginal bleeding
- Extreme tiredness
What to do if you are experiencing symptoms of ovarian cancer
If your symptoms are:
- Out of the ordinary
Make an appointment with your GP as soon as possible. Keep a record of the symptoms you are experiencing and have your notes to hand when you speak to your doctor, to help them make a diagnosis. Use our downloadable symptoms diary to help you keep track of your symptoms.
Reviewed: February 2023 | Next review: February 2024